Claudia Rafael is a digital artist and art director based in Berlin who explores the intersections of technology, extended and mixed realities, and popular culture. She is fascinated by how digitalism shapes new aesthetics that relate to art, nature, and society. Her artistic practice is broad, spanning various fields such as music, fashion, art, and culture. She is particularly interested in how digital tools can be used to challenge social norms and offer new possibilities for self-imagination.
Rafael grew up during the rise of the global Internet and Web 1.0 and studied graphic design and media design. As a result, she considers herself and all her pairs – digital artists – to be autodidacts, having grown up with technology as their primary medium. She recalls how, as a child, there were no mobile phones or the Internet, which makes her passionate even more how far technology has come today.
While working on the beta version of the Facebook augmented reality platform Spark AR in 2016, the artist embarked on her journey to discover how beauty diversifies and transforms, rather than conforms. Rafael’s interest in using digital tools to challenge social norms and offer new possibilities for self-imagination led her to create the A.I. Beauty Portraits series. By experimenting
and altering aspects of one’s appearance without the constraints of biological plausibility or acceptability, Rafael’s portraits offer infinite possibilities for one’s digital self.
In 2020, Claudia and her collaborators Florian Siegmann, Steffen Bewer and Andrea Avellino came together to form NEWFORMAT. Unifying skill sets and minds, the studio focuses on the interdisciplinary exchange between cultural and technological forces, making experimentation its manifesto and the promise of breaking new grounds the motto for constant research.